“I thought you weren’t going to have any more kids,” they said, pointing out an article I’d written a few years prior for CBC, where I defended our decision to have a single child. At the time, it was the right choice for us to not have a second for a couple of reasons, but the most important one being: we did not, at that time, want to add a baby to the mix.
Now, we do. And we’re about to.
I gently pointed out that it would be pretty miserable to live in a world where our biggest decisions couldn’t be changed over time as our lives progress. Imagine needing to choose at one point in your life if you’d have kids and how many, or needing to stay in a single job or profession for life.
At the same time we were pretty sure we weren’t going to have a baby, we were equally convinced we were going to live on the other side of the bridge in Halifax. We don’t. And I’m really glad for that.
If you’ve ever thought you wanted one thing only to later realize that you don’t; if you’ve ever felt guilty for changing your mind; if you’ve ever worried that you’ll be labeled a fraud or a flake because you changed course… take this as your gentle reminder that it’s OK.
It’s OK to change majors and follow a different path.
It’s OK to decide that the career you started out in isn’t the one for you.
It’s OK to end a relationship that isn’t making you happy.
It’s OK to decide that the job offer isn’t really what you want, after all.
It’s OK to cancel that trip.
It’s OK to decide to postpone your return to post-secondary.
It’s also OK to decide that maybe that’s just not the path for you at all, even if you always thought it was.
Life is always changing. Our options and opinions change with it, sometimes slowly over long periods of time or as quickly as a moment passes. Expecting ourselves – or others – to never have a change of mind or heart is as unrealistic as it is unhealthy.
So, yes. It’s true – I didn’t think I would have more children. I was pretty confident then that I was done, that I couldn’t go through a pregnancy and birth again. But as my life changed and my doctor’s recommendations changed thanks to months and years of check-ins, so did our minds.